Raiding the larder of ideas.

What one family eats, plans to eat, dreams of eating. Plus, other food and kitchen-related stuff from the home of steak-and-potatoes, pie and fresh green beans from the garden.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Not A Bad Way To Loaf: Coconut Flour Bread

Under normal circumstances, some things don't really go together. For example, I had a great honkin' canister of coconut flour on my counter, and a deep and abiding need for a slice of bread and butter. Generally, when I say I want bread and butter, it means I crave a slice of yeasty perfection – something I had thought I needed to give up when I cut wheat out of my diet a couple of years back. The dry-ish coconut flour was nowhere in the vicinity of meeting that need.

After all, the best bread in the world involves ooey, gooey stretchy gluten, right?

I really have tried a number of different blends of flours, and pretty much all the mixes on the market for baking a sandwich loaf, and, while they are (most of them) quite sufficiently tasty and firm for making a BLT, toasted or not, none of the ones I tried held my interest when treated to a coating of plain, simple butter. They just didn't measure up to Great-Aunt Helen's fresh farm-baked bread at the forefront of my memories. Well, that should come as no surprise. Helen's bread had the magical element of love. But that's beside the point. Her clean, simple recipe is pretty much impossible to imitate without the exact same ingredients. And I shouldn't have been trying.

I needed a small slab of something above and beyond merely "acceptable", upon which to spread my butter.  So I gave up on the not-so-cheap copies, and went back to the search. I found this recipe.

In my 1.5 quart pyrex loaf pan, the batter was dwarfed, producing a loaf approximately 1 inch high at the center of the rise. While that's not a terrible shape for biscotti, either I was going to have to go buy a new, smaller loaf pan, or I was going to have to adjust the recipe upward to make a loaf, not a rectangular pancake.

My budget helped me decide, so I opted for the latter.

Besides, I was expecting company for dinner at the end of the week, so, why not make enough to share (if I absolutely have to)?

It took a couple of tries to get it right, though, (my first large loaf was underdone in the center) so I'm glad I didn't wait until the last minute to learn.

What I ended up with was still not a great domed loaf of fluffy, puffy, yeasty, crusty farm bread, but it holds its moisture, and it holds a nice layer of butter…plus, it uses some of that great honkin' canister of coconut flour I wasn't sure I'd ever find good use for.*

And it tastes pretty good with a couple of slices of bacon, some lettuce, and a slice of vine-ripened tomato. Hold the mayo.

Coconut Flour Bread (large-ish loaf)


110 grams (1 cup sifted) coconut flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
8 large eggs
3 Tablespoons honey
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
3/4 teaspoon salt


With rack in middle of the oven, preheat to 325ยบ F.

Grease loaf pan (I like to use real butter for this, but you can use the spray stuff, if you absolutely must).

In a small bowl, sift together coconut flour and baking powder. Set aside.

Using the paddle attachment (not the dough hook) for your stand mixer, combine eggs, honey, butter, coconut oil, and salt. (If you don't have a stand mixer, just use regular beaters of your hand-held mixer.)

When they are thoroughly mixed, gradually add in the dry ingredients and mix well. Your dough should look a lot like thick cornbread batter.

Spread dough in the loaf pan, smoothing top with lightly moistened spatula or lightly wetted fingers. Place in center of oven, bake 60-70 minutes, until top has begun to brown.

Remove from oven and from baking pan, allow to cool completely on rack.

*This is to regular yeast bread what pound cake is to angel food cake: greater density, but still a tasty option.

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